This is a long post, but it’s a very important one and it’s worth a couple minutes of your time to read through it.
Last year, I wrote an article on the most dangerous pieces of gym equipment in terms of injury rates, etc. As I read through it, I have to make a confession: I was wrong about that list. There is one glaring omission that is more dangerous than all the rest combined.
The most dangerous piece of gym equipment is the SCALE.
The scale has injured more people than I can count. Not injured physically, but it has caused serious damage emotionally, mentally, and psychologically.
People tie their self-worth to that number on the scale.
I’ve seen it.
Nobody seems to put much value on how healthy they are as a result of their exercise habits. Or how fit they are compared to before. Or how their body fat and inches are going down. Or even how amazing of a person they are.
When they step on that scale, I see their facial expression change before the numbers even come up. I can see just how much that number on the scale means to them.
Let me open up a little bit to you guys right now. I love my job. I genuinely feel like I have the best job in the world thanks to my clients.
But when I see the tensed physiological response someone has when they’re about to step on the scale, it eats me alive. I feel sick to my stomach. There are nights when I find it impossible to fall asleep because someone got so discouraged after seeing that number.
I feel a ton of pressure, and I feel like an utter failure at times.
Not a failure because that person hasn’t lost weight (although of course I want people to achieve what they came here for). Failure because there are still so many people who prioritize the scale more than anything else.
HERE’S THE TRUTH:
Unless your body weight poses a threat to your health, your weight doesn’t really matter. You can transform your body without losing one pound because weight and fat are not synonymous. Body fat % and inches give you a much better indication of how your body is transforming.
This post isn’t about the mechanics of fat loss and metabolism, so I won’t go much further in to that.
So if you’re getting to the point where you are so stressed out about the number on the scale that you aren’t enjoying exercise or eating, then it’s an issue. Before you even think about body transformation, you need to address the psychological aspect. Why is it that you put so much value on the scale? Will your quality of life change if you drop 10 lbs?
People who are truly comfortable with themselves aren’t going to be more or less happy if they gain or lose a few pounds. Sure, it might cause a bit of stress if they put on some fat. And sure, it might spark a minor increase in confidence if they drop some fat. But ultimately, it isn’t going to alter their quality of life to the point where they go from depressed to happy. Happiness is internal, so if you’re seeking happiness externally (like getting that six pack), I can tell you from experience, it won’t work even if you do get it.
I read more fat loss articles than anyone I know. But after spending a ton of time, money, and energy in mastering the art and science of body transformation, the one thing I want you all to take away from this is that the scale does not define you.
AGAIN, if there’s only one thing you take away from me, let it be the fact that the scale is toxic.
1) The scale doesn’t accurately reflect body transformation or improvement. There are many more effective measures.
2) The scale is the most dangerous piece of equipment in the fitness world. Don’t let it destroy you.
This was a tough one for me to write. As always, I extend a heartfelt invitation to use me as your unconditional resource.